Pelé, a soccer superstar from Brazil and perhaps the best player to ever play the game, passed away at the age of 82. The former Santos and Brazil international had recently struggled with a number of malignant tumours. When it comes to his achievements, the label “superstar” does not even come close to doing them credit. Many people think of him as the sport’s king.
On Thursday, his daughter Kely Nascimento posted on Instagram, saying, “Everything we are is because of you. “You have our undying love. Peace be with you.”
A inspiração e o amor marcaram a jornada de Rei Pelé, que faleceu no dia de hoje.
Amor, amor e amor, para sempre.
Inspiration and love marked the journey of King Pelé, who peacefully passed away today.
Love, love and love, forever. pic.twitter.com/CP9syIdL3i
— Pelé (@Pele) December 29, 2022
He made the following announcement on his social media accounts:
Over the previous three years, Pelé had been in and out of the hospital, battling a number of medical conditions, including pain brought on by hip surgery. He received two days of cancer treatment in the hospital in January and was later released, according to Reuters. He had a colon tumour removed last year and has been receiving chemotherapy ever since. On November 29, according to a statement from the hospital at the time, he returned to the Albert Einstein hospital in Sao Paulo for “re-evaluation of the chemotherapy treatment over the colon cancer diagnosed in September 2021.”
Neymar posted on Instagram, “10 was simply a number before Pelé. “This saying is one that I’ve come across in the past. But this lovely statement isn’t complete. Before Pelé, football was just a sport, in my opinion. Pelé completely altered everything. He made football into entertainment and art. gave voice to the underprivileged, black people, and most importantly: Brazil. Brazil and football both gained popularity because of the King! His magic lives on even when he’s gone. Pelé is ALWAYS!”
The hospital announced last week that Pelé will stay put since his cancer was causing issues with his liver and heart. In a post on Instagram, Nascimento stated that “Our Christmas at home has been suspended.” “We concluded with the physicians that it would be better for us to stay here for a number of reasons.”
Pelé, the lone player to have won three World Cups, played the majority of his career for Santos, a Brazilian powerhouse team, tallying 618 goals in 636 matches. He contributed significantly to Brazil’s victories in the 1958, 1962, and 1970 World Cups as well as the growth of the sport in the United States following his retirement from the national squad.
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Pele played for the NASL’s New York Cosmos from 1975 until 1977. He was a striker and one of the greatest scorers in history with 655 goals in 700 matches for legitimate clubs. He was the first-ever Minister of Sports in Brazil, holds a several of records, and shared the FIFA Player of the Century award with Diego Maradona. Only with Santos did Pelé win 25 trophies.
With 77 goals, he is presently tied with Neymar for the most goals scored in Brazil history. The International Olympic Committee also named him the Athlete of the Century in 1999. In a total of 1,363 appearances, the superstar scored 1,281 goals over the course of his career, including games that were not sanctioned. In addition, Pelé is the youngest player to ever score in a World Cup and to have ever participated in the championship game.
The South American went back to the hospital last month after his colon cancer chemotherapy treatment didn’t work, and after a respiratory infection was also found, he was transferred to palliative care.
When Pelé’s health deteriorated during the World Cup, a building in Qatar was projected with the message “get well soon,” and Brazilian supporters paid tribute to him in the stands as his beloved Seleçao lost their final group-stage game 1-0 to Cameroon.